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Sudden connectivity issues with default settings for Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 160 MHz

Calinatus
Novice
581 Views

Dear fellow community members,

Since this afternoon, I've been experiencing some connectivity issues using the default settings for my Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 160 MHz. A short timeline:

  • I have installed DS4Windows for DS4 controller compatibility in games
  • I have installed the Windows 10 21H1 update
  • After having installed the update, Windows Update would not load (it would keep looking for updates without showing eligible updates, nor an up-to-date status), and in the shutdown/reboot menu, the options to update and shutdown/reboot would remain visible, making my computer reinstall (?) (part of) the update indefinitely.
  • Ergo, I uninstalled the Windows 10 21H1 update

After this, I saw that I could no longer connect to my wireless network (or any wireless network, for that matter; networks are correctly detected, though). I had been having connectivity issues in the past, where my computer would not connect to wireless network on startup, but it would after manual connection. However, now I could not at all connect to any wireless network anymore. I tried the following steps to solve this problem:

  • Check Windows update for driver updates
  • Clean (un)install the Intel Wi-Fi driver for my computer and adapter
  • Use the network troubleshooter
  • Try to boot in safe mode with networking; however, my computer completely seems to hang when trying this, no idea why; safe mode without networking works perfectly, but with networking, everything becomes irresponsive

The network troubleshooter revealed a problem with the connection status security, with error code 0x00048005. The troubleshooter was not able to solve the problem.

After a long search, I found that in the network adapter configuration, disabling 802.11n/ac/ax solved the problem. Setting it to either n, ac or ax makes the problem reoccur. However, I had not been tampering with these settings up until this problem. I therefore have no reasons to believe that this setting (which was set to 802.11ax) was disabled before the problem occured. A clean reinstall of the driver reset this setting to 802.11ax.

Disabling 802.11n/ac/ax fixed the symptoms (except for the much slower internet speed ...), though this seems only a workaround to a problem I do not understand.

Does anyone know what is going on, why I'm experiencing this problem, and why my adapter won't connect to wireless networks anymore, using 802.11ax?

Thank you very much indeed.

Regards,

Calinatus

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4 Replies
Khun_Doug
Valued Contributor I
553 Views

Calinatus,

First, the Windows Updates issue and problems with installing update 21H1 are most likely not related to anything with the network. There are numerous articles available on how to manually reset the Windows Updates function. Here is one page that might be useful: https://www.windowscentral.com/how-clear-softwaredistribution-folder-windows-10

You don't mention what type of hardware you are using. Desktop, laptop, preordered or custom-built. And what type of wireless are you connecting to: router or access point, model, mesh setup?

 

Calinatus
Novice
520 Views

Thank you for your reply. Manually installing the 21H1 update fixed that problem.

And for some dark, unknown reason, after this installation, my Wi-Fi problem has also been solved; I can now use 802.11n/ac/ax without any problems ...

But to answer your questions, now I have: Microsoft Windows 10 Home 10.0.19043 on a preordered, x64-based Lenovo Legion T7 34IMZ5, with Intel Core i9-10850K (deca-core), BIOS Lenovo O4LKT18A (2.3, version UEFI, Nov 2020), base board Lenovo 3715 SDK0R32862, 32 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 (10 GB dedicated).

Adapter: Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 160 MHz, Ethernet 802.3

Modem: 24*8 DOC 3 Wireless(DOCSIS), 802.11bgn at 2.4 GHz with channel width 20 MHz, and 802.11anac at 5 GHz with channel width 80 MHz, MAC filtering disabled.

Access point: WNDR4300TN, same settings as modem, except 802.11an at 5 GHz.

Wi-Fi powerline: PG9072, same settings as modem.

n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
551 Views

I will add that MS has invariably screwed up the LAN/WLAN drivers in almost every major Windows 10 update that has occurred. My recommendation is to always do a clean install of the LAN and WLAN driver packages after installing any major update. A clean install means performing an uninstall-reboot-reinstall process with Internet access completely disabled (so Windows Update can't screw things up). This means downloading the driver packages before starting this process.

Hope this helps,

...S

Khun_Doug
Valued Contributor I
541 Views

The trouble with drivers and major Windows updates extends to video drivers as well. And while we're on the subject of drivers and clean installations: Anytime a motherboard is being changed, forget the clone and put back your existing build on the new hardware. In all likelihood the driver suite will be wrong. And any system that has things installed and then uninstalled, for testing and evaluation or otherwise, you're better to periodically just reload the OS and put back the current suite of apps. The registry and profile folders tend to clutter up with stuff over a period of time. With the speed of hardware these days, it's not much effort to reload apps and port over the games. And in the process the user ends up with a much cleaner installation.

 

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